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Health Research Methodology

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Table of Contents

Introduction. 2

Main context 2

Conclusion. 10

References. 12

Introduction

Mobile apps nowadays are promoting wellness and easing chronic conditions to an extent by examining the lifestyle of the people. However, it is unknown how chronically ill patients use mobile app. The object of this essay is to look at the differences in physical activity, health-related lifestyle choices and eating behavior, between nonusers and users of mobile health apps.

Hypertension and obesity increase health care cost and decreases the quality of life. A large number of apps are available that are specifically designed to achieve objectives like quitting smoking etc. An individual suffering from depression, hypertension and high cholesterol is less likely to download health app. Through mobile apps, it is useful to communicate with the doctors.

Health apps work as a tool for promoting health among healthy individuals and chronically ill individuals. Individuals with complex treatment regime often depict poor adherence to treatment, low physical activity (Handel, 2011). Mobile phones have robust technology that performs a variety of tasks like tracking exercise and reminding medication or a walk. Studies have suggested that individual with poor health and low physical activities get more benefit from using health apps. Chronic illness is increased by an unhealthy diet and sedentary behaviour.  

Health apps play a very important role in effectively managing chronic disease. Medical non-adherence is quite popular in population with a chronic condition. Health apps are also beneficial in stress management. Irregular adherence to disease management can increase the risk of higher health cost and additional chronic diagnoses. Health app provides new methods for health promotion and disease management among chronically ill patients (Grist, Porter & Stallard, 2018).

Mobile technology is promoting low-cost population health. Studies have revealed that people using health app have the strongest urge for performing healthy physical activity. Chronically ill patients believe that health apps have the potential to improve their health conditions.

As smartphones can be used anywhere, so health apps have the potential to reach many people and contribute to their health promotions and health protections. In response to the global digitalization, the terms “healthcare mobile app development” and “mHealth apps” have emerged. The demand for mobile health app has increased among both physicians and patients. The health app can urgently provide advice and feedback.

Main context

Lifestyle behaviour and weight gain during college can contribute to the future health issues. The population may not have the required self-monitoring skills to maintaining the healthy lifestyle behaviours. The main purpose of the study was to examine the relationship between the use of the mobile health application which is designed for tracking physical activity and diet and health behaviours of the college students (Sarcona, Kovacs, Wright & Williams, 2017).

A cross-section study was carried out with 401 university students for completing the survey in order to assess the physical activity, lifestyle choices, eating behaviour and usage of mobile health app. The result depicted that the users of the mobile health app had higher scores significantly for the eating behaviour in comparison to the non-users.

The impact of using is seen in the improvement of eating behaviour. The participants who used the app are feeling healthier, increase physical activity, encouraged to eat healthier and better self-monitoring of exercise and food intake.    

A study depicted that young people use the health-related app more in comparison to the 65 years old people. It is being found that the app helped to weight loss among the younger participants between the age of 16 to 30 years in comparing to the older age groups who are between 31 to 50 years and 50 to 70 years. Male participants scored higher for physical activity and lifestyle and female participants scored higher for the eating behaviour.

The difference between mobile health app and gender is not seen. Ethnic minority women in college are seen to be more vulnerable to obesity and overnight. However, there is no difference found among non-whites versus whites in the use of the mobile application. The study did not determine that the obese and overweight individual uses more mobile health apps in comparison to normal weight individuals (Havelka & Verbovetskaya, 2012).

The obese respondents were 3.2 times more than the normal weight subjected to using the application and achieve the health behaviour objectives. The implementations of effective techniques for treating the high obesity rate are significant to reduce the prevalence of chronic diseases.  The app users have more positive eating behaviours in comparison to non-users. Exercise and healthy eating habits are a significant component of health promotion and chronic disease prevention.     

Low physical activity and unhealthy food habit are quite common among Australian students and adolescents. Obesity and overweight are posing a major health challenge. The mobile apps play a very important role in managing health-promoting strategies. Health apps are very important in promoting healthy nutrition, sound physical activities and preventing overweight.

Health app can be used as a monitoring tool for promoting health promotion strategies. Apps can be used to set targets, increase self‐monitoring and increase awareness. The research has revealed that some apps like ePASS, eVIP, eSIYP, eTIYP focuses on the risk of getting overweight. Apps like Ak-Shen, FRapp, App-Hongu, MoSeBo/DiaTrace mainly focuses on user group ageing between 11-18 years. More than 23% of Australian adolescents have downloaded free apps on a daily basis.

Smartphones are more often used by young and middle-aged people. 66% of the people with no chronic condition are reported to have downloaded the health app (Robbins, Krebs, Jagannathan, Louis & Duncan, 2017). 53.4% of the people with one chronic condition are reported to have downloaded the health app. 38.5% of the respondent without a health condition have downloaded the health app.

An individual with physical activity habit is more likely to use a health app than one without physical activity habit. Health apps are used two times or more by 21.3% of the population without a health condition, 2.7% of the population with hypertension, 13.1% of the population with obesity, 12.3% of the population with diabetes, 12.0% of the population with depression, and 16.6% of the population with high cholesterol.

In the above-mentioned survey so conducted, it can be concluded that individuals using health app are more physically active and enjoy sound health. Health apps continuously monitor the activities of the person using the app. As smartphones are mostly used by young and middle-aged people, so the problem of obesity in the adolescent people can also be brought under control. Health app ensures regular adherence to the disease management programme and in this way chronic illness can be prevented (Ronan, 2016). Health app ensures adherence to medication and helps in making healthy lifestyle choices. However, from this survey, the belief of the healthy person regarding health app is known but it is unknown what belief people with chronic conditions hold regarding health app.

Physical activity app has increased the level of health status and physical activity. This research is mainly focused on the potential of the apps to influence individual behaviour, the efficiency of the apps to influence individual behaviour and to identify what kind of app the users mainly prefer. The main purpose of this research is to identify the mechanism, which influences the physical activity behaviour in the physical activity app (Klenk, Reifegerste & Renatus, 2017).

Regular physical activities are quite effective in preventing both primary and secondary chronic diseases. Physical activities also reduce the chances of cardiovascular diseases, metabolic health issues, obesity-related conditions, stroke and another related heart disease. Physical activities can improve mental health, cognitive functioning and academic performance. Health apps have emerged as a potential tool for increasing the level of physical activity and health status. The study has revealed that majority of the respondents was within the age group of 26 to 54 years.

45.9% of the population using physical activity app was within the age group of 35 to 54 years. 82.1% of the population using physical activity app are white population. 94.2% of the population using physical activity app are of Latino ethnicity. 51.2% of the population using physical activity app are females (Hoj et al., 2017). 41% of the respondents use the physical activity app on a daily basis. 48.3% of the respondents use the physical activity app many times a week. 58% of the respondent has agreed that the use of physical activity app has increased their desire to stay healthy.

56% of the respondent has agreed that the use of physical activity app has increased their desire to stay physically active. 46.4% of the respondent has agreed that the use of physical activity app has helped them in setting their goal to be physically active.

The purpose of this research is to find out what behavioural changes have been incorporated by the physical activity app and to explore the relationship between the mechanism of behavioural change and the actual change in physical activity. A majority have stated that the use of physical activity app has increased their desire to stay healthy and fit.

A few respondents have reported that physical activity app has enhanced their knowledge regarding disease from physical inactivity (Sannino, Forastiere & De Pietro, 2017). Diet and physical activity app promote healthy eating and use of energy through physical activity and dietary intake. Previously no clear evidences had shown the effectiveness of this app in promoting healthy eating and physical activity.

This study has aimed to identify how the users of diet and physical activity app are getting affected. This study will also investigate if such an app is successful in bringing any change in diet and physical activity.

The app users are of the view that the app is helpful in promoting a healthy diet and exercise in their routine. The app is able to change their health consciousness and education about nutrition and physical activity. Half of the app users have asserted that the app was effective in guiding them to eat healthily and to exercise (Wang, Egelandsdal, Amdam, Almli & Oostindjer, 2016). Diet apps are more effective when used frequently and for a long period of time.

App users can more effectively manage their diet and physical activity behaviour than non-users of the app. Young users are of the view that the app should be designed in such a way, that it can meet their expectations. The app has facilitated in maintaining healthy diet and exercise. 66.7% of the app users used both diet and PA apps for monitored food intake and energy output.

App usage has brought behavioural changes among the users such as choosing low-fat products, mineral water instead of sweetened beverages and counting calories. App usage has reduced the tendency of purchasing ready-made meal instead are prepared at home. App users, unlike non-users, have a tendency to consume low-fat products. App users, unlike non-users, have a higher probability to undergo weight loss (Fox, 2010). Most of the app users have given positive feedback regarding using such an app and has stated that using such app are relatively easier.

Most of the app users are of the view that the app could increase their behavioural intention and eHealth literacy. Health behaviour change is a central objective of health promotion is often not maintained. However, there is no evidence to prove the effectiveness of the app and the actual change in the health behaviour of the app users. Though for many using the app is fun but for some using the app is time-consuming. The app users by seeking an understanding of eHealth information can guide their actions accordingly (Linkov, Shubnikov, Padilla, McCallum & LaPorte, 2012).

The study aims at finding out the effect of m-health and e-health technologies in the health promotion. This research study aims at providing a systematic review of the m-health and e-health tools in health promotions and the primary prevention in older people. M-health and e-health tools are used in diverse health promotion programs by older adults. M-health and e-health tools are used outside a formal programme to improve the health of older people (Kim & Xie, 2015).

The success of m-health and e-health tools in health promotions relies on the support and motivation that older people receive from m-health and e-health tools. M-health and e-health are electronic devices used by physicians or individuals to improve their health status. This article will focus on the global market and trends of the m-health app. Many diseases among older adults can be prevented by living a healthy lifestyle. Proper diet and physical activity prevent obesity, heart disease, premature mortality and hypertension. As older adults are physically inactive m-health and e-health technologies can be used for the health promotions.

M-health and e-health tools are used for primary prevention and shealth promotion. Such a program allows older people with personal goal setting and achieving goals. 70% of the m-health app publishers choose both ios and android platform.

Telehealth programmes are conducted to increase in the physical activity among the older people. Telehealth programs assist older people to access their health and help in health promotion (Kampmeijer, Pavlova, Tambor, Golinowska & Groot, 2016). Most of the health promotions target overweight people. Apps are being used for providing health-related feedbacks to the older adults in the health promotion program.

The research focuses on the issue of using m-health and e-health tools in primary prevention and health promotion. However, the use of e-health and m-health tools is an isolative initiative. The e-health and m-health tools in health promotion and primary prevention can benefit the ageing population. This programme can be effectively designed to avoid potential barrier and make them cost-effective (Aija, 2016). The main driving force of m-health app is the fast adoption of smartphone and tablet technology in the health care sector. Physicians use mobile app for monitoring their patients' health. The m-health app is spreading awareness among patients' regarding the possibility of management of the chronic disease.

Many applications relating to nutrition and diet are available in a smartphone. Apps relating to diet and nutrition promote health research and practice. In this research, the use of the application for promoting healthy diet and nutrition will be taken into account. Obesity is mainly responsible for causing cardiovascular diseases, cancer and other chronic illness.

This ill effect of obesity has promoted people to promote healthy eating and weight control (Anderson, Burford & Emmerton, 2016). Smartphone platforms have lowered the cost of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Apps provide a low-cost and useful way to spread information about proper diet and nutrition. Apps include providing feedback, the setting of goals, healthy intake of nutrients, weight tracking and planning social change and support.

Most of the theories are based on health behaviour change and does not include evidence-based recommendations for taking diet and nutrients (Miron-Shatz & Ratzan, 2011). Smartphones app has been designed to enhance the acceptability and affectivity of proper diet and nutrition necessary to lose weight.

The research has revealed that participants have found the app helpful and easy to use. Some studies have revealed that the accuracy of the nutrition and diet measurements involving personal data assistants and smartphone devices are correct. The use of apps has facilitated better dietary compliance for low fat, lower calorie, and high fibre foods (Coughlin et al., 2015). Apps are a low-cost intervention for improving diet, nutrition and addressing obesity among the masses.

Respondents prefer applications that are easy and quick to administer and increase awareness regarding the intake of weight and food management. The study has analysed the effectiveness of the smartphone app to improve diet and nutrients among the population. This study has further examined, how far has the diet helped in reducing weight.

App has the potential to improve the accuracy of self dietary intake in weight control mechanism (Anderson, Burford & Emmerton, 2016). Smartphone reduces the burden of paperwork in monitoring dietary intake. Smartphone recording regarding food intake is found to be moderately good than the traditional method. Apps are useful and are low-cost intervention for promoting healthy eating and weight loss.

Mobile apps can promote healthy nutrition and physical activities among the masses to keep themselves fit. Healthy eating prevents overweight in adolescents and students. Mobile apps are effective in health promotion. Effectiveness of health promotion apps depends on theoretical mechanisms for changing behaviour. Theory-based interventions use one or more theories for their development.

Apps aimed at improving health by promoting healthy eating habit and incorporating physical activities in the regime (Mendiola, Kalnicki & Lindenauer, 2015). The apps also improve health by preventing overweight and obesity among the masses. Apps increase the physical activity level among the users by making the users of the app aware of the daily amount of physical activity and by encouraging them to exercise.

The app mainly focuses on the intake of fruits and vegetables in the diet to increase dietary fibre, which checks obesity. Some apps focus especially on the high risk associated with obesity and prescribe measures to remain fit and healthy. Apps help in self-monitoring the intake of the diet. In most of the apps, the apps allow specifying the type and intensity of the physical activity. The apps measure the physical activity level with the help of inbuilt sensors like pedometer or accelerometer (Moxey, McEvoy, Bowe & Attia, 2010).

The adolescents find it much easier to use the app as it is cost effective and convenient to use. Smartphones are convenient to use as it can be carried everywhere. The apps allow accessing the picture before and after the consumption of food and beverages by users. Most apps are a part of the prevention programme (Casperson et al., 2016). The apps like ePASS, eVIP, eSIYP and eTIYP mainly focus on a healthy lifestyle programme. The CHAT app supports students through text messages.

The study focuses mainly on the effectiveness of the app to promote healthy eating. Apps are convenient to use and are cost-effective at the same time. Most of the apps are less time consuming and easy to use. The users have asserted that apps have brought a change in their daily lifestyle by recommending healthy food habits and physical activities. The problem of obesity and overweight has remarkably decreased by adhering to the daily regime as suggested by the app.

Mobile applications encourage physical activity and healthy lifestyle. Apps are growing health concern among the public by encouraging physical activity. Though many relations between using of app and change in physical activity is not known it can certainly be stated that mobile apps to promote a healthy lifestyle among masses (Caburnay et al., 2015).

Using apps is positively related to feeling better about oneself. The main aim of this research study is to reveal the relationship between app usage and change in the physical activity, lifestyle and health of the individual. The app is helpful in improving the self-images of the user. Research is needed to determine the relationship between using the app and developing healthy physical behaviour.

Mobile app intervention is helpful in additional education and self-reporting of the frequency in the use of the programme. The apps have a certain positive effect like increased physical activity, cardiovascular fitness and reduced overweight. A recent study has shown promising results when apps are used in isolation.

Many Web-based apps on lifestyle have indicated decreased weight and increased physical activity among people (Dallinga, Mennes, Alpay, Bijwaard & Faille-Deutekom, 2015). The apps are often combined with an external pedometer, small sample size, a small increase in step count and short duration of interventions.

Several apps have emerged that assist in the running exercise of the users. Research has shown recreational running and participation in running event could act as a potential health-promoting activity. Majority of the participants exercise individually and some of them has organised running groups.

Mobile apps are effective in developing consciousness among the people regarding their health and well being. The app is successful in making people understand the benefit of remaining healthy as it will waive many diseases. The apps are encouraging healthy food habits among people.

As the apps are cost-effective many people can access them and incorporate the suggestion in their daily life. The apps guiding healthy eating habits can calculate the intake of calories among the individuals which will, in turn, help them to stay fit. Health apps can even improve the health of chronically ill patients by monitoring their diet and calorie intake. The health app increases the urge in individuals to perform physical activities (Cheng & Chen, 2018).

The lifestyle of people has changed a lot with the use of these health apps. Use of health app has both advantages and disadvantages. Individuals can track and monitor their own health like a heartbeat, blood pressure, calorie intake and the amount of sleep. Such data can improve individuals' health recommendation in a personal context.

Monitoring can help individuals to lose weight, intake low-fat diet, exercise regularly and target heart rate for cardiovascular fitness. Using the app can increase individuals' confidence while making lifestyle changes to achieve health goals. The individuals can share their personal experience to encourage others and obtain support while working towards wellness (Peng, Yuan & Ma, 2018).

Mobile apps have become increasingly popular among smartphone users. There has been a rush of health-related apps in recent years. The health-related app is released both for I-phone and Android. Health care suggestions were previously provided by the clinicians. This new technology has improved the way of interaction between the patient and the health care professionals.

Health care apps perform functions like time management, information, communication, patient management and health record maintenance (Garman, Royer & Johnson, 2011). There are many issues that challenge the integration of the app in health care settings. Many of the deaths due to non-communicable diseases can be avoided. Many risk factors like unhealthy diet, tobacco, stress, depression and obesity can be avoided by the intervention of the app.

The health-related app has the potential to attract a large number of people as they are cost effective and convenient to use. Health app can increase knowledge of the women regarding contraceptives. Health apps can help in easing low back pains. The app is designed to encourage healthy habits.

The apps are useful in changing the behaviour pattern among the users of the app. The app users are finding it increasingly convenient and cost-effective to use. Earlier they have to visit the clinic of a dietician to get a suggestion regarding a healthy diet to curb down obesity but now this particular function is performed by the apps.

This is not only cost-effective but has also helped in time management of the people (Zhao, Freeman & Li, 2016). The health apps enable one to document and analyse what one eats and drinks in a day. As the apps are calculating the calorie intake of an individual, they can easily prevent one from overeating and thus prevent obesity.

Conclusion

The study depicted that the difference in physical activity, health related lifestyle choices and eating behaviour between non-users and users of mobile health app. Exercise and healthy eating habits are a significant component of chronic disease prevention and health promotion.  Young college students are using the mobile health apps for improving the quality of their health.

The result depicted that the users of the mobile health app had higher scores significantly for the eating behaviour in comparison to the non-users (Gower & Moreno, 2018).  Health app generally serves two main functions of collecting or recording data and providing access to health information in the form of nutrients, healthy diet and workout routine. The health app makes individuals pay attention to what they eat and how much they work out.

Using apps consistently makes a difference in life. Health apps use a movement sensor to track walking, cycling and running. Many health apps do suggest workout routines. The healthy eating apps enable one to document and analyse what one eats and drinks in a day (Robbins, Krebs, Jagannathan, Jean-Louis & Duncan, 2017). The apps enable one to access calories and nutrition information.

Apps help one to compare and choose foods according to the calorie content. Majority of the apps can read the bar code on the foods and the drinks. Digital medication reminder app reminds individuals to intake medicines on time. The app is helpful for persons who are in taking multiple medicines at different times on the same day.

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